Just thought I'd let you know that I passed! Yes, I am now a fully qualified Dive Instructor . . . all that remains now is finding a job - keep those fingers crossed.
All the girly swat stuff paid off, as I got 99% in the exams, getting only one question wrong. Managed to get top marks for both my classroom presentation and pool session too, so pretty pleased with that. The examiners were really nice, and put us at ease well, so I actually ended up enjoying the exams much more than I did the course. As an extra bonus, on the way back from Fitzroy Island where we did our open water presentations and rescue demonstrations, we saw a group of four humpback whales, not far from the boat.
All seven of us who had trained together passed, so the evening's piss up was an all round celebration, and a total success. Today I arranged to do a CPR refresher and oxygen provider course - both of which I need to have to teach here in Australia - with the ambulance service, and in the next day or two I shall start touting my CV about town to see if I can't get a job here, preferably teaching. It'll be two weeks before the paperwork is processed, so I have a little time left to enjoy my freedom. It's very nearly a year since I quit Customs (that joyous day!), so I guess it's about time I re-entered the world of work.
In a farcical and badly timed move, I unfortunately dropped my mobile 'phone down the toilet, and appear to have killed it. I shall try to dry it out, but considering the thing gets all temperamental if it gets a few spots of rain on it, I don't hold out an awful lot of hope. I am of course going to need a 'phone for when all the job offers come flooding in (I hope!) so I guess I shall have to buy a replacement.
Well I shall leave you with a few observations I have made since arriving in Cairns, and a couple of stories.
What's all that about?
Blue lights in public toilets - I don't want you to think I've been frequenting the places or anything, but I have noticed that at least three public toilets in Cairns have these bright blue bulbs in them. It really is most bizarre.
Cunning traffic lights - the little red man tells you not to cross whilst there's no traffic coming, then as soon as the green guy (and frantic beeping) tell you to cross, cars turning left start hurtling around the corner towards you! Is it a ploy to cut down on the number of pedestrians?
Disappearing pavements - they just peter out mid step, it's not even like they're leading anywhere half the time. You look up, and see one over the road so cross over to walk on that one instead, and the same thing happen. Just where are you meant to walk over here? Or maybe you're not!
Arcades leading from one street to the next - they're all over the place! There are three in one short section of Lake/Abbott Street alone - a regular style arcade, featuring shops and eateries, a little hidden one that takes you past an ornamental fountain into the back of what would be a pound shop at home, complete with cuddly koalas made in Taiwan, and a third that emerges in the back of Westpac bank.
Really bad adverts - I'm talking Folkestone Market, "Bring big bags and little money" style bad. Crap still shot cuts to crap still shot while big bright letters flash the message to you which a man putting on a bad accent reiterates. Thing is over half the adverts here are local adverts (for local people). Badly made adverts, for which there can surely be no excuse in this digital age. And then there are the public announcement advert - the one that warns you not to swim at dusk or dawn, in rivers or unpatrolled beaches, with pets or when bleeding! And what's with the one with Steve Irwin, the one about pool safety? Do you get that everywhere, or is it just here? That's just bizarre, there's no need for that!
Arctic air-conditioning - listen guys, if you want to live in a cold country go move to one - what is this obsession with cranking the air-con up so high there are icicles hanging off of it? When the temperature is 30 degrees out you don't expect to have to go everywhere armed with a jumper and thermals because the temperature in the internet café/shop/classroom is turned down to a cold day at home.
Lunch time kareoke sessions in noodle bars - nuff said!
How to shower like a woman:-
One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do.
Finally he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway, it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey. He invited all his neighbours to come over and help him. They each grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well.
At first, the donkey realised what was happening and cried horribly.
Then, to everyone's amazement, he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer looked down the well, and was astonished at what he saw. As every shovel of dirt hit his back, the donkey did something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up. As the farmer's neighbours continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up.
Pretty soon, everyone was amazed, as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and trotted off.
Life is going to shovel dirt on you. The trick is to shake it off and take a step up.
Remember the five simple rules to be happy:
The donkey later came back, caught the farmer out in the field and bit him. Then kicked the shit out of him. Then he went over to each of his neighbours' farms and bit and kicked the crap out of them too for helping.
The REAL Moral: When you try to cover your ass, it always comes back to bite you...